Sunday, October 09, 2011

X Marks the Spot

A recent decision to cancel a planned speaker has left me peculiarly upset. I'm not sure why this particular cancellation is really getting to me; usually I can rebound pretty quickly from these things, but I can't shake this one. Each time I think about it I feel livid and bitter at the missed opportunity cost. Not since I was on steroids was I this consistently angry for more than a 24 hour period.*

Let me explain that I am totally down with security precautions. Totally down. Big fan of the whole 'life' thing. Not so keen on being kidnapped. Looking forward to growing old with my knitting and those two cats and a fern which I'm sure I'll be acquiring at some not too distant future point. If RSO tells me I'm standing on an 'X', believe me that I am going to scramble to get off of it.

But I want to keep in mind, too, that my job here is to move America off the big 'X' it is standing on. It's no good patting ourselves on the back for dodging individual cars if it still leaves us slap in the middle of the highway. To stretch the metaphor, we can't get ourselves out of the oncoming traffic if we're not strategic about our security precautions and the direction they take us. I guess this cancellation was the first time I really felt like I'd been told "We'd like you to quickly guide America across I-10 -- you'll just need to wear this suit of rusty armor for your protection. Don't worry; we welded the seams shut to lessen the chance of shrapnel penetration."

To paraphrase Ice-T: you shouldn't get mad at everything, just really mad at the right things. I'm pretty mad. I hope it's not misplaced.

*Crikey, has it been five years already? I should throw myself a party.

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